|Women's Basketball RESULTS
|Ole Miss 78, Louisiana-Monroe 72
|Georgia 74, South Carolina State 58
|Mississippi State 81, Savannah State 63
|Florida 72, St. John's 68
|Missouri 78, UMKC 69
Rebel Women’s Basketball Wins Third Straight Over Louisiana-Monroe
OXFORD, Miss. –The Ole Miss women’s basketball team, led by 23 points and 10 assists from senior Valencia McFarland, picked up its third consecutive win with a 78-72 win over Louisiana-Monroe at Tad Smith Coliseum on Tuesday (Nov. 26).
Playing their third game in five days, Ole Miss (4-4) scored 12 points out of the locker room to take a 41-40 lead –its first since the 4:54 mark of the first half-- and extended it to 51-47 minutes later. The Rebels wouldn’t trail again en route to their third straight win.
“I’m very proud of our team’s effort tonight,” said head coach Matt Insell. “We have played three games in five days. It was very tough on them. I told the team when we got back from Hawaii that we needed to win three out of three, and they did that. A big reason we did that was Valencia McFarland. She took over that basketball game in the second half, and she has done that these last three games. She has stepped up in leading our basketball team, and I couldn’t be more proud of a player than I am of her.”
For the third straight game, McFarland lead the Rebels from the floor. She scored a season-high 23 points and picked up her first double-double of the season with 10 assists. Reigning Co-SEC Player of the Week, Tia Faleru grabbed eight rebounds to lead Ole Miss’ rebounding efforts while adding 13 points. McFarland’s 23 points was a season-best and marked her third straight game of 20 or more points.
It was a total team effort against Louisiana-Monroe (2-3) as the Warhawks wouldn’t go quietly. After Ole Miss took a 13-point lead with two minutes left in the contest, Louisiana-Monroe cut the lead just two possessions with under a minute to play behind baskets from Ashleigh Simmons and Alexar Tugler, but Ole Miss sealed the victory from the free throw line.
Louisiana-Monroe’s Simmons led all-scorers with 34 points and 10 rebounds.
"We dug deep,” said Insell. “This is a big win for our basketball team, for our confidence and toughness. This win will win us a lot more basketball games."
Redshirt sophomore Gracie Frizzell, was deadly from long range against the Warhawks. She scored a season-best 17 points, and went 4-of-8 from downtown. Faleru also reached double-figures for the fourth straight game and was just two rebounds shy of her third consecutive double-double.
The second half was as tight as can be, with neither team taking more than a four-point lead until 12 minutes into the second half. Ole Miss tightened up on defense and was able to get some fastbreak buckets, outscoring Louisiana-Monroe, 16-2 on fast break points for the contest. The Rebels also took advantage of the 22 Warhawk turnovers, scoring a season-high 24 points off Louisiana-Monroe miscues. After scoring just 28 points in the first half, Ole Miss scored 50 points in the second half and shot 48.4 percent (15-of-31) from the floor, up from 26.2 (11-of-42) in the first half.
The Rebels opened the game cold from the floor, failing to connect on their first six shots and found themselves in a 10-2 hole. Frizzell’s sharpshooting helped the Rebels get back in the game, as the Arkansas native hit two big treys, and the Rebels were able to cut the Monroe lead to just two points, 14-12, at the 13:57 mark.
The game went back and forth for the majority of the first half and Ole Miss was able to tie the game five times, but the visitors closed the half on a 8-2 run to take a 32-28 lead into halftime.
Ole Miss nailed four first half three-pointers, three from Frizzell, and forced the visitors into 12 turnovers in the first half, but couldn’t get much going from the field, shooting just 26.2 (11-of-42) from the floor.
Ole Miss hits the road for the first time in three games when it travels to New Orleans to take on Tulane on Saturday (Nov. 30). Tip is set for 2 p.m. at Tulane’s Devlin Fieldhouse.
Lady Bulldogs Claim 74-58 Victory over S.C. State
ATHENS, Ga. – Erika Ford scored career-high 23 points and Tiaria Griffin finished just one assist shy of a triple-double as No. 22 Georgia cruised to a 74-58 victory over South Carolina State on Tuesday evening at Stegeman Coliseum.
Georgia continues its perfect start to the season with a 6-0 mark, while S.C. State drops to 1-3 on the year.
Griffin scored 16 points, grabbed 10 rebounds and dished out nine assists. Her 10 boards surpassed her previous career-best mark of eight, recorded last season against Alabama. The Monticello, Miss., native also set career highs with assists, free throws attempted (eight) and free throws made (six) in 37 minutes of action.
Ford surpassed her previous top mark of 18 points recorded almost exactly two years ago on Nov. 27, 2011, against Northeastern. Ford shot a remarkable 90 percent from the floor, knocking down a career-best 9-of-10 field goals, while also chipping in with four steals.
Senior Khaalidah Miller was the third Lady Bulldog in double figures, turning in 11 points and tying a career high with six assists. Freshman Sydnei McCaskill came off the bench to score a career-best eight points, including a pair of three-pointers, to go along with two assists and a pair of steals in 23 minutes of play.
“We didn’t shoot it well tonight and didn’t shoot it well from three”, said Georgia head coach Andy Landers. “Erika shot it very well, but we got excellent three-point shot attempts and didn’t knock them down.”
The two teams traded baskets back and forth over the first four minutes of play before Georgia reeled off 15 unanswered points to take a 21-6 advantage midway through the first half. Ford contributed eight points during the run, including a pair from long range.
Georgia increased its lead to as many as 20 during the opening period of play before heading into the break in front 42-25, thanks in large part to 54 percent shooting from the field.
Georgia continued right where it left off after the break, taking its largest lead of 22 points at 55-33 with just over 13 minutes remaining in the second half. S.C. State would close to within 13 points twice over the next seven minutes, but a pair of three-pointers by McCaskill and a trey from Griffin would help seal the 74-58 win for the Lady Bulldogs.
Georgia shot season-best marks of 49 percent from the floor (27-for-55) and 75 percent from the free throw line (12-for-16). The Lady Bulldogs scored 31 points off 20 S.C. State turnovers while also winning the rebounding battle by a 35-23 margin.
The Lady Bulldogs will begin play at the Georgia State Invitational in Atlanta on Friday afternoon when they take on George Washington at 4:30 p.m. Their second game of the tournament will be on Sunday, with the time and opponent still to be determined.
State Women Remain Perfect With 81-63 Win Over Savannah State
STARKVILLE, Miss. – A dominating first-half performance helped lift the Mississippi State women’s basketball team to an 81-63 victory over Savannah State Tuesday night in Humphrey Coliseum.
The Bulldogs won all four games on the homestand. MSU’s 5-0 start is the program’s best since the 2008-09 squad won its first 11 games.
MSU shot 51.7 percent from the field in the opening half and led 50-33 at halftime. Foul trouble and sloppy play made the Bulldogs attempt at separation hard to come by in the second half of play.
“I was disappointed in certain aspects of what we did tonight,” MSU head coach Vic Schaefer said. “We had 22 turnovers against a zone defense is not good. They had 12 steals out of the zone. Our preparation was not good.
“We are fixing to depart for six-day road trip (at the Gulf Coast Classic) and I think the kids’ minds may have already been on the plane. We did enough things to get a good win and that is the bottom line.”
The Bulldogs used a 10-0 run to build a double-digit lead as the game approached the midway mark of the first half. A jumper by Dominique Dillingham ran the lead to 20-9 with 10:46 left in the half.
“It was a win but it was not one of our best wins,” MSU junior Kendra Grant said. “We are looking forward to the tournament. Coach talked to us about focus at the beginning of the game. It was important we found our focus and found a way to get the win.”
Dillingham finished the contest with 18 points, five rebounds and three assists in 25 minutes of play.
“Dominique was really good tonight,” Schaefer said. “She had a great stat line for a freshman. She did all of that in 25 minutes of action. Jerica James also played very well. Kendra Grant had 19 (points) and eight (rebounds) and I don’t think she played particularly well. Kendra battled through foul trouble all night.
“Those are the expectations that we have for her.”
Two free throws by Grant ran the lead to 27-11 with 9:39 left before halftime. With a total of 36 fouls called in the opening half, each team had ample foul shot opportunities. The lead grew to 19 at 38-19 on an old-fashioned 3-point play by Dillingham.
Grant had 12 of her 19 points in the first half as the Bulldogs led 50-33 at the intermission.
“In the second half, Savannah State really competed,” Schaefer said. “They have been on the road for a while. They competed and played with spunk. They bounced back after a dismal first half. I didn’t think we really responded in the second half like we needed to, to put a good team away.”
For the contest, the Bulldogs hit 24 of 63 shots from the field (38.1 percent), 5 of 8 shots from 3-point range (62.5 percent) and 28 of 33 shots from the foul line (84.8 percent). The Tigers hit 19 of 57 shots from the field (33.3 percent), 0 of 7 shots from 3-point range (0.0 percent) and 25 of 35 shots from the foul line (71.4 percent).
MSU held a 47-37 rebounding advantage. The Bulldogs had 19 assists and 22 turnovers, while the Tigers had five assists and 25 turnovers.
For MSU, Grant and Dillingham were joined in double figures by Martha Alwal with 15 points and James with 10 points.
Savannah State (3-3) received 21 points from Ezinne Kalu and 17 points from Kenyata Hendrix.
The Bulldogs return to action Friday in the opening round of the Gulf Coast Classic. MSU will face Grand Canyon at 5 p.m. in Naples, Fla. The Lady Bulldogs will also play Saturday and Sunday to complete the event.
Three Gators net double-figures, as Florida holds off St. John’s late rally for win, 72-68
GAINESVILLE, Fla. – Sophomore January Miller (Orlando, Fla.) scored 17 points and led a trio of Gators in double- figure scoring, as Florida defeated St. John’s, 72-68, Tuesday at the Stephen C. O’Connell Center.
The Gators led by as many as 21 points with 17:58 left in the second half, when St. John’s went on a furious rally that cut Florida’s lead down to 61-58 with 6:27 remaining in the contest.
Miller, who was coming off a career-high 19 points in UF’s last game, followed her own miss, collected the offensive board in traffic, put up a physical shot that dropped in as she was fouled. Miller drained the free throw to complete the three-point-play and give Florida a 65-60 lead with 4:08 left.
Miller then collected the ensuing defensive board off a quick Red Storm shot.
Florida has some chances to extend its lead, but faltered at the free throw line, where the Gators managed to convert just 17-of-34.
On the other side of the court, St. John’s continued to hit its charity attempts and was able to cut Florida’s lead to two points, 68-66, with 45 seconds remaining.
Carlie Needles (Highlands Ranch, Col.) put up a three-point shot that rattled in and out, but Kayla Lewis (Decatur, Ga.), who played just 15 minutes because of foul trouble, skied for the offensive board and Florida maintained possession.
Senior Jaterra Bonds (Gainesville, Fla.), who entered the game hitting 86.8 percent from the free thrown line, uncharacteristically missed both attempts with 18 seconds on the clock and the Gators still holding the two-point cushion.
Lewis came through again with another offensive board. Knowing St. John’s would probably foul, head coach Amanda Butler inserted sophomore Cassie Peoples (San Antonio, Texas) into the tight game and Peoples came through be getting fouled and calmly nailing two clutch free throws that extended UF’s lead to four, 70-66, with 16 seconds remaining.
After a missed three-pointer by the Red Storm, Lewis collected her third rebound in a 21-second span and was immediately fouled. Lewis stepped to the line and knocked down both tries with six seconds to go and sealed the win.
Sophomore Christin Mercer (Douglasville, Ga.) came off the bench and scored 16 points on 6-of-8 shooting, with a team-best seven rebounds, while Bonds added 13 points for Florida, which forced 23 turnovers and converted those into 31 points.
Doty's Career Night Carries Tigers over Kangaroos, 78-69
Columbia, Mo.- It was a career night for Tiger sophomore Lianna Doty as she led the Tigers to a 78-69 win over UMKC on Tuesday (Nov. 26). For the second time as a collegian, Doty tallied a double-double with career-highs of 21 points and 10 assists to go with a career-high six steals.
Bri Kulas added 15 points, while Maddie Stock chipped in 14 points off the bench for the Tigers, who improved to 6-0 on the season with the win. Mizzou forced 20 turnovers for the second time in three games, and the Tigers also continued its season-long streak of posting a positive assist-to-turnover ratio in every game.
The game was a back-and-forth affair for much of the first half, and the Kangaroos took a 38-37 lead into the locker room. But Doty's three-pointer with 18:22 left in the game put the Tigers on top, and Kulas followed suit just 21 seconds later after a Morgan Eye steal to push the lead to five. Mizzou never looked back following that sequence; in fact, the Tigers held UMKC without a field goal for a span of over eight minutes late in the game to put the game comfortably away.
Mizzou will spend the Thanksgiving holiday in Miami, Fla., at the University of Miami Thanksgiving Tournament. The Tigers face Hartford at 2 p.m. on Friday (Nov. 29) and either St. Francis or Miami on Saturday. Missouri returns home to host Oral Roberts on Dec. 4.
Keep checking in to MUTigers.com for more information on Mizzou Women's Basketball. Fans can also follow the team on Twitter (@MizzouWBB), Facebook (Facebook.com/MizzouWBB) and Instagram (@MizzouWBB).